Thursday, October 11, 2007

Cyber Me, Gloria

Gloria is hellbent in pushing for the Cyber-Education Program of the Department of Education. She claims that this will reduce dropout rate which has been plaguing the country. She said that students will now receive quality education in real-time conducted by master educators.

Stupida, tonta (add whatever you want)! Up to now, some 20% of the country is without electricity. Only 10% of the needed classrooms can be constructed. Of the classrooms available, many are in desperate need of repairs and do not even have chairs for the students. Classes in some schools are held in sheds and even under the mango tree. The classrooms needed for this year alone is 40,000 while the DepEd has budget for only 4,000.

Gloria should set aside this CEP not because its not beneficial but because what we really need to address is the shortage of facilities for the CEP to work. At $465 million, this project is not cheap. We do have other systems we can use and would cost less. Other factors such as typhoons, local holidays and other calamities should be factored in.

The government has three TV stations that are in its control, Channels NBN 4, RPN 9 and IBC 13. While 9 and 13 are used commercially, NBN 4 airs purely propaganda materials to make the government feel good about itself. I wonder why Gloria should insist on the CEP instead of putting these three stations to good use.

Broadcasting in real-time is also absurd considering that typhoons cause cancellation of classes, power outages and damage to facilities. These affected areas will now be left behind in the scheduled lessons. Local holidays will also affect schedules making real-time inapplicable.

A cheaper and more practical alternative would be to record lessons and lectures in DVD, VCD or even VHS formats and distribute this to the different schools all over the country. This would allow teachers to playback lessons for further discussions. This would lead to better learning and comprehension for the students. Typhoons and other factors which could lead to some schools being left behind would be inconsequential.

Equipment for this is readily available and very cheap. Like I always say, we don't need complicated solutions to simple problems. Its as simple as 123 but definitely not complicated as ABZTEFG. The CEP is clearly another ploy to fatten the pockets of those in power. Don't take us for fools Gloria, we are more intelligent than you may think. And this intelligence we got through old-school education and not some space age technology.